Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Senior Leader Profiled

from today's Waukesha Freeman --

A leader from the beginning
As sweeper, Schoendorf has directed CMH soccer team since freshman year

By Daniel Mike Freeman Staff

WAUKESHA – Eric Schoendorf was anointed a leader when he first took the field for the Catholic Memorial High School boys soccer team. Stepping into the sweeper position, Schoendorf was given the responsibility of directing his teammates. “My freshman year, going in, it was really scary,” he said. “The seniors didn’t like how I stepped in and directed them, but I had to try to be a leader.” But the Crusaders advanced to the WIAA Division 2 state championship game that year – and the following two years.

“He’s a natural leader,” CMH coach John Bisswurm said. “He understands the game very well. He’s like having another coach on the field.” Schoendorf’s voice has grown with his leadership skills, being heard more over the years as his confidence and game grew. “I’ve got to be a vocal presence on the team, because everything is in front of me because I’m in the back,” Schoendorf said. “I tell a lot of people where to go, where to defend.”

Leadership was a trait Bisswurm and the rest of the CMH coaching staff saw in Schoendorf, who grew up playing with the Elmbrook Soccer Club. It became so evident that he was named a team captain as a junior. “He had the natural leadership ability, which is something we recognized,” Bisswurm said. “His leadership ability, especially at his position, he needs to organize everyone on the field. He has to act as a field general. “He’s filled that leadership role since Day 1 of his freshman year.”

Schoendorf has been an integral part of CMH’s success in recent years. This year’s challenge is getting the Crusaders to a fourth straight state title game and get over the hard-to-climb hump Memorial has struggled to climb in recent years, being runnerup three straight years. “This year, we have to work a lot,” Schoendorf said. “We always want to get to the next level. This year, that would be getting to state and hopefully winning that title.”

Schoendorf, a first-team all-Classic 8 Conference and honorable mention all-state pick as a junior, will take his talents to Loyola University of Chicago next season, as he committed to the school this summer. “Their coaching staff is exceptional,” Schoendorf said of Loyola. “You need a good coach. You want to work hard if you’ve got a good coach.” Bisswurm believes Schoendorf is a great catch for the Ramblers. “It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see his ability, and from the beginning you could see how talented he was,” Bisswurm said. “He’s been instrumental in our success the last three years. He’s really solidified our defense. “He’s one of the premier players in the state.”

E-mail: dmike@conleynet.com
Photo: Kevin Harnack/Freeman Staff Eric Schoendorf has flourished as Catholic Memorial’s sweeper.

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